UK to assist in Smart City Initiative for Bhubaneshwar & Rourkela

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With the capital city and Rourkela figuring in list of 100 Smart Cities Mission, the state government has decided to engage UK-based Department for International Development (DFID) to provide technical assistance (TA) support to both the cities in preparing smart city proposals.

On the basis of the proposals, both the cities will participate in the city challenge competition along with 98 other cities. In the first phase, only 20 select cities would be developed as smart city.

Besides, individual consulting firms, including Canada-based Jones Lang LaSalle Incorporated, Delhi-based Feedback Infra, Tata Consulting Engineers Limited and Fisco, having expertise in development of real estate and information and technology would be engaged in preparing the plans, official sources said.

“The civic bodies have been asked to prepare plans by November 15. The proposals would be submitted to the Centre by December 15,” said S K Ratho, special secretary, housing and urban development.

Before preparation of the plans, the cities would have a ‘citizen engagement’ programme to receive comments from different stakeholders, he said.

Asked whether there would be any standard operating procedure to prepare the city plans, Ratho said there is no uniform plan for all the cities.

“The approach is not ‘one-size-fits-all’. Each city has to formulate its own concept, vision, mission and plan for a smart city that is appropriate to its local context, resources and levels of ambition,” the smart city guidelines said.

A potential smart city should have assured water and electricity supply, sanitation and solid waste management, efficient urban mobility and public transport, affordable housing, robust IT connectivity, e-governance, safety and security of citizens and health, education and economic activities.

So far, the Centre has granted Rs 4 crore (Rs 2 cr each) to the state for preparation of the smart city proposals, official sources said.

The implementation of the smart city will be carried out by a special purpose vehicle (SPV). The SPV will plan, appraise, approve, release funds, implement, manage, operate and monitor the development of smart city. The SPV will headed by a CEO and have nominees of the Centre, the state government and the civic body concerned.

The city, which would figure in the first list of smart city, would receive central grant of Rs 194 crore and Rs 200-crore grant from the state government.

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